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Submit proposals for NSF research instrumentation grants

November 9, 2016

engineering-equipment-homepage-portraitInternal proposals for the Major Research Instrumentation (MRI) grants provided by the National Science Foundation (NSF) are due to Sponsored Programs Administration by 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 15. A committee of qualified scientists will review the proposals and will submit their recommendations to the Division of Research and Innovation Partnerships (RIPS) on which proposals will move forward for submission to the NSF. RIPS will make their announcement on their selections the following week, on Wednesday, Nov. 23, by 4:30 p.m.

The MRI Program serves to increase access to shared scientific and engineering instruments for research and research training in institutions of higher education and other research organizations. The program provides organizations with opportunities to acquire major instrumentation that are too costly and/or not appropriate for support through other NSF programs and will support the organization’s research and research training goals. The instrumentation must have a broad base of users including researcher groups within the organization, or even regionally or nationally.

Each MRI proposal may request support for either the acquisition or the development of a single, well-integrated research instrument for shared inter- and/or intra-organizational use. The instrument acquired or developed is expected to be operational for regular research use by the end of the award period. The program does not fund research projects or provide ongoing support for operating or maintaining facilities or centers.

Proposals should request funds in the $100,000-$4 million range. Proposals that request less than $100,000 may be accepted for the disciplines of mathematics or social, behavioral and economic sciences. Cost-sharing of precisely 30 percent of the total project cost is required. Proposers may request an award period up to three years for instrument acquisition and up to five years for instrument development.

The requirements for content and submission of an internal proposal for the NSF’s MRI competition are here:  MRI Internal Competition AnnouncementThe proposals selected from this internal competition will be the only ones to be fully developed and submitted to the NSF.

More information on the MRI is available at